Gower Gulch is partially hiked in conjunction with the Golden Canyon to Zabriskie Point Trail. You can choose to include both on your journey or just finish the loop. Either option will take you on an amazing hike through the canyons of the majestic Armagosa Mountains. This loop’s trailhead starts at the Golden Canyon parking lot, and from there you can choose to enter the canyon or follow the foothills until you reach the Gower Gulch Canyon entrance.
The loop essentially follows the canyon washouts, so the ground is quite uneven. It is a fairly easy going hike apart from a few minor technical climbs of no more than 8 feet. While this is a free hike zone, there is a designated trail that is denoted by markers periodically set along the trail to keep you on track. This is one of the few trails in Death Valley National Park with trail markers, and it is also one of the more popular hikes in Badwater Basin.
Although the occurrence of flash floods in the park are uncommon, it is obvious that floods have had a major role in shaping this landscape. Volcanism has played a key role as well, contributing to the geological uniqueness in shape and earthtones. Every turn offers something different, and the variation keeps the hike interesting throughout.
The best times to approach this hike are early morning or late afternoon/early evening. During these times, the canyon walls provide shade as the sun is not directly overhead. If you are taking photos, you will get plenty of reflected light for a great exposure. Furthermore, watching the sunrise on Golden Canyon is an amazing experience, and it is worth getting up a little early to check it out!